Revisiting Anthony Galluccio

At last week’s debate in Charlestown between the candidates for the vacated Middlesex, Suffolk and Essex Senate District seat, Anthony Galluccio’s closing remarks took at shot at opponent Tim Flaherty.  Galluccio said he had wanted the job “when it wasn’t a new and exciting time to be in Massachusetts politics.”  We remember, of course, that Galluccio eyeballed the seat in 2006 before Senator Jarrett Barrios decided to run for reelection.  Citing a lack of funds, Galluccio bowed out of the race.  But not before his reputation crashed harder than his 2003 Accord surrounding his third DWI investigation. 

One might recall Dave Wedge at the Herald reporting that Galluccio’s first DWI occurred in Cambridge in 1984.  Fortunately, a governor’s pardon in 1993 wiped away the charge just in time for a bid at a Cambridge PD position, according to the Globe. 

Four years later in 1997, Galluccio had another slip up, this time in Natick.  He was charged with DWI, found at fault and lost his license for 120 days plus another 45 days once the case was continued without a finding.  But since the 1984 incident had been pardoned, the Natick accident was not prosecuted as his second offense.


Galluccio flew under the radar for a while until his four-car crash on Congress St. in winter of 2005.  Driving home one Saturday night at 2am, Galluccio rear-ended another car, causing a domino effect of cars stopped at a traffic light.  Eyewitnesses to the accident described him as clearly intoxicated.  One witness even recalls having to take the keys out of his car to prevent Galluccio from driving away from the scene.  Galluccio filed a police report the next day, citing ice as the reason for his car’s lack of control.  Janet Wu at Channel 5, who would later jumpstart the second investigation, reported that conditions that night were dry.  But that’s okay.  As David pointed out to us, Galluccio didn’t sign his report, anyway. 

The case went virtually uncovered until a complaint was filed by the Boston PD after Galluccio was not charged with driving while impaired.  Janet Wu’s investigation revealed that in addition to the handful of witnesses, two EMTs who responded to the accident both agreed that he was alcohol impaired, slurring speech and stumbling.  The other item the EMTs agreed upon?  Galluccio made it a point to tell them that he was a Cambridge City Councilor.  Did he also notify the police when they arrived, in case the laminated placard displayed on his dashboard was not enough notice?  Might that explain why Galluccio was never given a field-sobriety test?

In April 06, Clerk Magistrate Daniel Hogan decided Galluccio should not face charges.  Hogan argued that the handful of eyewitnesses were not credible, and that testimony from the one EMT asked to testify was inconclusive, despite his opinion that Galluccio was “definitely alcohol-impaired.”  The second EMT was not asked to testify. 

Hogan said that he was not aware of Galluccio’s past incidents.  In 2005, the year Galluccio was busted for the third time, there were 1.4 million arrests for DWI, less than 1% of the 159 million self-reported cases of drunk driving, according to the CDC.  How often does one have to drive drunk to be busted three times?  You do the math.

Politicians are people, too, and they of course make mistakes.  But the third time Galluccio made the same potentially deadly decision, he was sure to announce his position in power with the city of Cambridge.  Had he been the councilor from Roxbury or even Southie, would Galluccio have walked?  What if he was just another guy coming home from the Foxy Lady?  What’s important here is not just the history of reckless judgment shown by Galluccio, but also his manipulation and abuse of his position to weasel out of these indefensible actions.  Galluccio’s lawyers were right about one thing- enough is enough.  We may not have been able to keep his car keys away from him forever, but we can certainly make sure he doesn’t get the keys to the State House.

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38 Comments . Leave a comment below.
  1. *Nods in agreement*

  2. Character Assasination

    We may not have been able to keep his car keys away from him forever, but we can certainly make sure he doesn't get the keys to the State House.

    Clearly Galluccio had a drinking problem and implying that a former alcoholic shouldn't be elected to high office is in my view a low blow, especially considering that our states senior most Senator that is fairly popular on this site not only had a drinking problem but got into a much more serious and deadly accident. He was similarly dismissed of charges using his political connections and is currently the longest serving Senator in MA history, and the third longest in US history.

    Needless to say Galluccio hasn't killed anyone, nor will he. He has quit drinking which means future incidents will not happen and might I add the DWI charge is a much lesser charge, it means he barely failed the breathalyzer test, driving with 2 or three beers or shots in him could have triggered such a low result. A DUI like Bush's or Teddy's wouldve been much more serious.

    So short of digging up old dirt to slander the mans character because you dislike his progressive politics whats the meaning of this?

    • Don't bet your life

      Needless to say Galluccio hasn't killed anyone, nor will he.

      You sure about that?  I don't think you're in any position to make any guarantees. 

      Here's the thing though - it's not just that he drove drunk, and put people's lives in danger (repeatedly), it's that he lied about it this last time.  And made out his accusers, and victims of the accident, to be liars.  All to save his own hide.  Wouldn't a real leader stand up and admit he made a mistake?  Galluccio has never done that.

      The man may be a progressive, but there are a lot of qualified progressives in Massachusetts.  We really can't do any better than this?

    • Responses

      Pretty sure that DUI is a lesser charge than DWI. 

      And I don't think it is quite fair to dismiss DUI/DWI as a drinking problem, criticism of which is unfair.  If he was a boozer, and took a cab, that's a drinking problem.  When he drove, that is a much bigger problem.  As far as I am converned, he might as well have fired a shotgun into a crowd.  Repeated instances of this problem make it an even bigger problem.

      • It's OUI, not DWI

        In Massachusetts, the charge is "OUI"- not DWI or DUI.  In other states, like RI, they call it DWI or DUI.  OUI stands for Operating Under the Influence, and there is no lesser included offense as far as I know.  Usually someone will be charged with negligent operation or reckless endangerment as a sort of lesser alternative when they don't think they can prove OUI.

        Also, does it strike anyone else as sort of odd that this particular story was promoted?  The person who posted it only created his account last week, and it seems funny that his very first post is an extended diatribe against Galluccio.  Frankly, I am disturbed by Galluccio's total lack of regard for the law and his reckless disregard for public safety, but I am also disturbed by the fact the BMG seems willing to do anything- including lending credence to the political aspirations of certain less-qualified candidates- in order to see that Galluccio is not elected. 

        • Oh,

          and who exactly do you think this site is pushing?

        • Even if it is a fly-by-nighter intent on promoting negative press for Galluccio

          so what?  If the content is interesting, informative, relevant, or otherwise worthwhile in the opinion of the editors, than why not promote it?

          This is a blog, not the news section of the NYTimes.  Nobody's making any claims that facts have been checked with the exception of The Romney Files or whatever the editor's Romney project is called.

          • on second thought....

            I totally agree.  This site should be viewed as a forum in which opposing political campaigns can freely sling mud at each other.

        • 90-24 also includes

          operating a motor vehicle so as to endanger the lives and safety of the public.

          ** read my post below.

          A police officer may  as the result of his investigation , cite an operator for 90-24  operating a motor vehicle under the influence of an intoxicating beverage, and as well (not a lesser and included offense) 90-24 operating so as to endanger. The PO may also throw in: care in stopping, starting, turning and backing, and failure to keep to the right, and failure to remain within marked lanes (these are lesser and included offenses)

          Just to keep the jailhouse lawyers here up to speed.

          • What I meant

            Was that when someone blows a .04 and passes field sobriety tests, they are often still charged with negligent operation and/or reckless endangerment.  And as I mentioned above, there are no "lesser includeds" of OUI- everything else in the statute is a separate and distinct offense that just happens to be encompassed in 90, 24.  Sure, you can be charged with OUI, neg op, and reckless endangerment- but in my experience, a defendant is generally charged with reckless endangerment or neg op when the arresting officer thinks that the person has had a few drinks, but can't prove OUI.  This also happens quite often in the case of OUI-drugs, which is extremely difficult to prove.

            And just for the record, I'm not a "jailhouse lawyer"; I'm an actual lawyer and a former prosecutor. 

      • $quot;a crowd$quot; may be extreme

        maybe just a small gathering would be more fair.

        • I disagree

          When you choose to drive drunk, you are knowingly putting the lives of everyone else on the road at risk.

          • It was a joke

            and I by no means am defending drunk driving -- in fact, I've long argued that the punishment is far too lenient.  In my opinion, if you get convicted of a second DWI/DUI/OUI, you should be banned from driving in that state for life.

            That said, if you fire a shotgun into a crowd, the odds of you injuring somebody quickly approaches 100%.  The odds are nowhere near that high for driving drunk -- I'd bet that they're well lower than 5%.  As for which is deadlier in the event of a collision, I leave that to ballistics experts and German-type physicists.

    • do you know Galluccio personally?

      If so, please tell us a little bit more about him, and how he managed to kick the habit, which, if true, is quite impressive and to be commended.

      If not, how do you know that he's quit drinking?

    • What ?

      Mass general law 90-24  operating under the influence of intoxicating liquor or drugs.

      Unless there has been a recent change in the law, that's it. No such thing in MA as DWI, unless something got sneaked by me.

      .08 BAC is a prima facie case.

    • Quitting?

      I'm sorry, but 2005 is a little too recent for me to consider the man "rehabilitated" and on the road to making better decisions. Clearly he is an habitual drunk driver.

      This doesn't mean that he's a terrible person or that it even means he's a terrible politician. But when I question a person's ability to make the right decision about driving, then I sure as heck question his ability to develop and implement crucial, widespread policies.

      • Oh really

        Ted Kennedy drove drunk and essentially let a girl drown, not as the right wing says due to murder or mal intent but due to the fact that he was too intoxicated to do anything to save her, and he was barely sober enough to save himself. Patrick Kennedy has a drug problem, Gerry Studs was a statutory rapist, but all were great progressive politicians and I do not see why one little incident in their past screws things over.

        And yes I do know Galluccio personally and know for a fact that especially in light of his recent marriage and the fact that he is trying to be a dad that he has overcome those personal demons, and to shoot an otherwise respectable and competant politician down, especially when hes trying to sober up, is reprehensible.

        • Show me a man...

          Who has made a mistake, and I'll show you a man who should be forgiven.  But show me a man who has made the same potentially fatal mistake three times and then used his political position to escape the consequences, and I'll show you a man who should never hold any office again.

        • And...

          If you know Galluccio personally, ask him this question for us.  Where was he coming from at 2am Saturday morning?

        • See...

          That's the thing. It's not just "one little incident" in Gallucio's past. It is a repeated behavior.

          Hey, if the guy can stay off the sauce whenever he gets behind the wheel for more than five years then I would be more inclined to believe he's got a handle on his "problem" and could handle the responsibilities of public office.

          Besides, he should have thought about how his actions would effect his future campaigns before he made the decision to drive drunk.

          • How many

            I wasn't going to weigh in on this... but here I am.

            Certainly it is anyone's choice whether there is some magic number of past incidents that make them not want to vote for him.  But if what is being said -- that he used to have a problem and has overcome it -- then that seems good to me and more power to him.

            It is also interesting to me that groups I respect like the Mass Alliance and Progressive Democrats of Cambridge have looked into ALL the candidates and, despite some big mistakes in his past, endorsed Galluccio.

            Perhaps if there were another strong progressive Democrat in the race that people felt comfortable with there would be more to talk about.

            For my money:

            1) Galluccio seems to have gotten his life together, which I think we should be excited about.  That's what we want people with problems like that to do.  It doesn't undo what he's done in the past, but people changing like that is amazing.

            2) People and organizations that I know and trust are saying that he is the candidate who would be the best advocate for the things that I care about.

            I hope he wins.

            • Well said

              I think Tim Flaherty is worth a look too, but mainly I want to agree with your general premise.

            • Wow

              If calling yourself "reformed" two years after your last incident is enough to gather that much respect, I might have to revisit my career path!

              • Maybe...

                ...you should just say that you're not going to vote for him.  But if someone with a problem cleans up for two years, you should probably say "hey, congrats, great job."  Cause most people don't pull that off.

                Again, you still don't have to vote for him, but give me a break.  Do you actually know anyone who ever beat a tough problem?  How long did it take you before you told them they did a great job?  Most people are saying that after a week... or even after just the stated attempt to try.  Why are you so opposed to encouraging people who pull their lives together?

                This whole thing is amazing to me.

                • Since you decided to go there...

                  I know many people who beat a tough problem. I happen to be one of them. And quite frankly, issues regarding my drinking still come up seven years after I "beat" it. And each time it does I just consider it a further consequence of my previous actions. Granted, as each year passes the there are less questions. But that's simply because I have established a track record.

                  But two years? C'mon...I don't think that qualifies as pulling your life together.

                  It's all about taking responsibility.

      • What about Ted?

        How many times has Ted been "forgiven?"  How much crucial and widespread policy has this guy influenced?

    • Unfortunately, you do not speak for Councillor Gallucio.

      This thread may be stale by now, but I had to respond.

      Your entire comment is beyond the pale, in its substitution of your unnamed personal connection to Councilor Galluccio, for credible commentary on an important issue.

      jconway, you are not Councilor Galluccio's public mouthpiece. Councilor Gallucio has never publicly addressed the recent drunk driving incident in anywhere close to an honest and satisfactory manner.

      That is step 1 in any consideration of his fitness for higher office, or, for that matter, current office.

      He used to be my councilor, but is not presently. But I am in 26th middlesex, and I will tell you that I do not want a man with his disrespect for the truth of his own public statements - much less with his very recent and unaddressed DUI history - to represent me as my state senator.

  3. ConflictedIt'

    I wasn't aware of any of the above. It's all very troubling -- especially since he seems to be the most competent, knowledgeable candidate.

    • Hey---he's a democrat pol

      That's grounds for dismissal of all complaints. Just ask any judge or clerk of courts in MA. Or the hack clerk of courts that dismissed these instant complaints.

      AKA: The broom, or a "bag job" Everyday occurence in MA.

      If you are a working stiff, poor, or a white male, you had better get a lawyer and hold onto your ass, especially if there is an allegation of 2nd and subsequent offenses.

      Justice in Massachusetts is such a beautiful thing. If you're connected, you walk. Just ask Uncle Ted, Joan, Patrick, Joe. You and I are deserving of immediate "justice". If you are a beautiful person, an enlightened  democrat, wellll, we'll let it go this time, and the next time, and the time after that.

      • Re: MCRD and others

        MCRD-You sound like a Howie Carr listener, dont you realize that guy is just as rich as the limo liberals he hates? Or that the nice union regulations you have, the schools you have, any social assistance that you or anyone else used, etc. are all the results of Democrats? Its time for the angry and resentful working class white to wake up and end this bullshit. Im sick of being called an elitist by someone who votes against their own economic hide for the Wall Street party.

        Galluccio-Again I say the past is past, hes a great city councilor, he will make a great Senator. Also how come nobody is talking about BMG golden boy Jeff Ross's accident, or is illegal out of state campaign contributions? Or the fact that he is a carpetbagger?

        • Hey

          If you've got a problem with Ross, take it up with Ross.  Likewise, if people have a problem with Kennedy, say so.

          But Galluccio isn't worthy of that seat.

        • I was required to be in district courts and superior courts on a frequent basis

          I'm very much well aware when the "touch" goes out.

          If you think our court system is "on the level" then I honestly feel sorry for you. Because it's a joke and the favortie targets of the courts are those who are not a protected group. It's really amazing to see a "public defender" approach a cop and cut a deal or simply throw his client under the bus tto maximize his profit by getting rid of the case ASAP. many of these cases were triable, but who cares.

          My elected politicians are those who are directly responsible for our outrageous tax burden. They raise wages so they can take more taxes and support their hand out constituent base.

          Spare me the lecture. I've watched those turds on Beacon his for over forty years. " Hey Charlie, how ahh ya?" "What can use to fa me?".

          I'm an independent voter who is sick of corrupt politicians and political parties whose loyalties lie soley with getting career hack politicians re elected and their hack families in the public trough. That includes Dems and repubs.

          I'm sick of being taxed into oblivion and then seeing that tax miney pissed away on every PC feel good program that comes down the pike. I'm sick of tax money going out the door through fraud, waste and abuse.

          I'm sick of uneducated, wishy-washy, spineless candidates/politicians who will tell you what you want to hear rather than what's right. I loathe dishonesty. You want to screw me. have the balls to do it when you are looking me in the eye.

          I have no problem with a drunk in the state house, as long as he/she admits to it, and takes a cab or a bike.

          DO not be an apologist for one party and then speak disapprovingly of another party guilty of the same act. If you're rotten, then you're rotten, party affiliation has nothing to do with it.

          Ted Kennedy and William Delahunt, Patrick Kennedy, and Joe Kennedy are all loathessome human bings, not so much for what they have done, but because they are frauds and liars. They do not have the courage to confess to their crimes and take their just punishment and then pick up and start down a new road. They simply continue to lie, deny, place blame on others, obfuscate, and threaten. Nice people.

          • I wasn't going to rate this

            ... but then I saw the 6 and had to counterbalance it.

            MCRD, you are aware this is a Democratic site, right? What is your point in smearing Democratic officials? We know they're not perfect and we're going to say so, but seriously, what is your point?

          • Daddy, what's

            a bag job?

        • Say wha?

          If you can explain how Jeff Ross' accident, where he was at a complete stop in the middle of the morning before being hit from behind has anything to do with this I'd be curious.

          Similarly I've heard nothing about illegal contributions other than an article in the Cambridge Chronicle that suggested in the headline that he might be getting free help from a non-profit hosting an event before the article goes on to conclusively say that he paid for the use of the site and absolutely nothing was illegal.

        • Happen to agree with you, JConway

          I've read all the comments (including some from a guy who should issue a disclosure) all I can say is that while Galluccio isn't perfect - he really is the best candidate for the job.  The majority of you don't even want to acknowledge any of his accomplishments. I've seen the man in action; he truly does care about his constituents and he delivers.  Whether it's getting a kid a summer job or helping an elderly person find housing...Anthony understands the urban working class better than any of the other candidates. This is no limousine liberal - Galluccio is the son of a widowed mother; the man knows what it is to go without and he knows what is it to work for what he has.  Speaking of work - His work with the youth in Cambridge is impressive, and his push for affordable housing in Cambridge is well known.  In short - he cares about the things I care about, and he actually works on these issues instead of just talking about them.  (sorry, talk is cheap in my neighborhood)

          In terms of my own disclosures - I am the adult child of an alcoholic.  I detoxed my father eight times between 2003 and 2005.  He's been sober now since July of 2005.  In order to get on with my life, I have had to forgive, really forgive, my father for the things he's done...and he's turned himself around after decades of alcoholism. Also, I met Galluccio in 2002 when he ran for the Senate seat the first time.  I was impressed then, and remain so.  I am not from Cambridge, but from another city in the district.  Additionally - I'm not a newbie to BMG.  I used to post under ColorMePurple but forgot my password, etc. 

          I think Anthony Galluccio has made some very serious mistakes, but I don't think they should be lethal. He's never hidden his mistakes as many of you have alluded.  He's owned up to them - have any of you attended any of his fundraisers?  He's quite open about it. Nevertheless, Anthony's done great things as the mayor and city councilor; I hope we get to see the next chapter as State Senator. 

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Fri 24 Oct 12:51 PM